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Smartphones and texting while driving: the numbers are worrying

Over the past three years, two insurers questioned motorists about their use of phones while driving. The figures show a significant increase in the number of people who claim to use their smartphone while driving.

According to the first insurer, 43% of motorists use their phones while driving. That is an increase of 5% compared to the previous study published in 2016. In detail: 39% of them make and receive calls, while 30% write or read text messages and instant messages. Some 13% read or reply to their emails, and 20% of 18-25 year olds check social networks while driving.

A second insurer focused on the phenomenon and released its figures in the summer of 2019. And the figures are more alarming. 70% of French drivers admitted to using their phones while driving!

46% of motorists use their smartphone to make a call and one in four use it to make a call or send an SMS. Not to mention that 54% of respondents say they have a GPS to guide them. Compared with 30% in the first survey.

According to the Road Safety organisation, phones are involved in at least one accident out of ten. 800 violations of phone use at the wheel, held in the hand but also used via an earpiece (subject to a €135 fine and three points lost from the licence), are recorded every day in France.

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4 reasons to stop using your phone while driving

An email, an SMS, or a photo… how can you resist when you see a new notification on your smartphone? In 2017, the Road Safety organisation launched a campaign to warn of the dangers of using the phone while driving. Several lessons have been learned from this campaign

During the five seconds you spent looking at your screen, you drove almost 70 metres through town without looking at the road. Or at any pedestrians who may have crossed the road. The observation made by the Road Safety organisation at the time was simple

RELATED ARTICLE> Smartphones and texting while driving: the numbers are worrying

9% of road accidents are caused by using a phone while driving. That’s 1 accident out of 10. We give you five good reasons to put your phone away when you get behind the wheel.

The phone uses all your senses and diverts your attention

Your device is the only one that uses four senses and therefore diverts your visual, auditory, cognitive and physical attention. The best thing to do – as the Road Safety organisation advises – is to turn it off, or even put it far enough away from you so as not to be tempted.

135 euros and three points lost

Using your phone in the car is only allowed under one condition: to connect your device to the vehicle’s bluetooth device. As a reminder, the law prohibits all headsets (even wireless ones), and provides for a fine of 135 euros and a loss of three points from your licence.

One in ten accidents

By forcing you to look away, the phone triples the risk of an accident. This risk is multiplied by 23 if you text. According to figures provided by the interior ministry, phones are involved in almost one in ten accidents involving personal injury.

Take a break

On long journeys, it is recommended to take a 15 to 20 minute break every two hours. After you’ve come to a safe stop, then you can answer your messages, calls and other e-mails

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Stef partners with SportAidons for an exceptional auction

On Wednesday 3 June, the Stef association launched its first sports jersey auction. Due to exceptional circumstances, we wanted this operation to benefit those who were and still are on the frontline during the coronavirus crisis.

To do so, our organisation wanted to offer a jersey in addition to a financial donation to SportAidons. Launched by goalkeeper and member of the French national handball team, Cyril Dumoulin, the association initially raised 330,000 euros. In its second phase, it hopes to reach 330,000 donors with a minimum donation of 5 euros.

Raising awareness through sport

For the initiative, SportAidons called upon many sportsmen and women. Among them, racing cyclists Thomas Voeckler and Brian Coquard, tennis player Julien Benneteau, some football personalities such as Patrice Garande or Valentin Rongier. Not forgetting the Olympic judo vice-champion Clarisse Agbegnenou.

Like Stef, SportAidons wants to raise awareness and attract attention through sport. And it was only natural that our two organisations quickly teamed up and auctioned off the Chelsea jersey, autographed by all the players and accompanied by a certificate of authenticity.

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Intervention at the Jehanne de France high school

On March 9th and March 11th, the Stef association was present at the Jehanne de France vocational high school, as part of its partnership with the regional Road Safety organisation. Romain Poirot testified in front of about twenty pupils about the dangers of using their phones while driving.

In the wake of this testimony, a concentration exercise was put in place. Several students had to put the 26 letters of the alphabet, written on cubes, back in order. They then repeated the same exercise while answering questions 

Result: everyone took much longer on the second try. Proof that it’s difficult to do two things at the same time. And therefore to drive and text at the same time.

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Sécurité routière 69 is with us

At the beginning of January 2020, Stef and Sécurité routière 69 (the regional Road Safety organisation) joined forces in the fight against texting and driving. Within the framework of this partnership signed in February, we have been and will be called upon to speak to different audiences in the Rhône department.

The interventions at the Jehane de France high school and at the Deborde school centre are the first of these events. After the lockdown period due to the coronavirus epidemic, other workshops in schools should follow, but also with adults.

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We’ll be auctioning sports jerseys soon!

In order to finance its activities, the Stef association has planned, in addition to possible donations, to auction several sports jerseys. To do this, a secure sales area will soon be created on our website.

Paul Pogba, Franck Ribéry, Corentin Tolisso, Ferland Mendy and Baptiste Santamaria are some of the footballers who have sent us jerseys to support us in our fight against texting and driving.

Stef would like to thank all the athletes who offered us their jerseys and support us in our initiative. Shortly before the summer, we should launch our first auction thanks to the French trio from Celtic Glasgow: Odsonne Edouard, Christopher Jullien and Olivier Ntcham!